People Tell Us Their Fabulous Revenge Stories
21. Won't Tell Us The Car Prices? We'll Keep Walking
“I was car shopping with my dad many years ago. We’re both in construction, so we were dressed in somewhat rugged clothing at the time. My dad also has a heavy Indian accent, so usually experiences far more racism than I do.
We were in a Toyota dealership and seemed to be reluctantly greeted by an older white salesman that obviously wasn’t happy to see us. My dad is asking about a Tundra pickup truck, and the guy just keeps on telling him it’s ‘very expensive’.
My dad is pressing more and more, and the sales guy is practically steering him to the smaller model truck because it’s more affordable.
My dad’s frustrated, so I start asking about the hybrid Highlander (fairly new technology at the time), and the sales guy is shocked that I’d even dare ask about such an expensive car. Wouldn’t sit down with us to talk about packages and pricing, just dismissed me as a guy that could never afford it.
We walked away and said goodbye to the guy, and he was happy to leave us alone. We didn’t leave though and were approached by another salesman in a few minutes asking if we needed any help.
30 minutes later, we’re both ready to sign paperwork for a new high-end Tundra and new mid/high-end hybrid Highlander. I had been approved already for financing, and my dad was buying his truck outright.
The original salesman finally noticed us and interrupted the process to tell the sales manager that we were his clients (presumably for commission reasons). We were patient and quiet up to this point, but my dad and I looked at each other and were ready for some revenge.
I started to calmly let him and the sales manager know how rude and condescending he was by refusing to take us seriously and not even telling us the pricing of the vehicles.
He denied it, and my dad stood up yelling at him about being racist, about our family running a multi-million dollar company (we build and sell about 3-5 houses a year, so $2 million is still technically multi-million), and just going off on the guy. My dad ended up tearing his check-in pieces and throwing them in the garbage. The old salesman actually took an angry step forward toward my dad, and I stood up to my full 6’5″ height and asked if he was seriously trying to physically threaten my father.
It was utter pandemonium.
The sales manager took the original salesman outside the office, and the second salesman joined them. We could see everything through the glass walls everywhere, and the manager was freaking out at him while the second salesman seemed to be confirming that everything we said was true. The sales manager came back with the owner of the dealership, who unbeknownst to us also happened to be Indian.
The owner apologized profusely, then he and my dad spoke with each other in Punjabi. I could keep up enough to know my dad was retelling the story of our experience, and then afterward doing some wheeling and dealing again. We walked out of there with new and even better deals on each of our cars, and I made fun of my dad for not knowing that an Indian guy owned the dealership.
As we walked out, the original salesman apologized profusely to us, but we kept walking. When we came back a few days later to get our new vehicle, we were told the original salesman was fired, and we felt zero guilt about it.”
20. Reminding Me I'm Working At Will? That Cuts Both Ways
“A few years ago, my husband was laid off at the start of summer. I had a part-time gig as a teacher, but it didn’t come with benefits. I had to take a job, any job, to provide health insurance while hubby looked for a new gig. I got a job as a teller at a bank.
I tried but was new to keeping a till, so a few times a week, my register wouldn’t balance.
Never very much money – under a few dollars. But the whole staff had to stay late until we straightened it out. I felt horrible for the rest of the staff. As if that shame wasn’t bad enough, my supervisor, ‘Mel,’ would remind me that I worked ‘at will’ and they could fire me at any time. Our family’s health insurance going up in smoke was terrifying to me.
Sometimes it was hard to hold back tears.
I got better as the summer went on, but every few weeks, if I would make a mistake, Mel would smile as she warned me that ‘You can be fired for no cause and you’d have to leave immediately.’ It was so fantastically over-the-top. At one point, I pointed out that constant threats didn’t create a healthy environment. Her smile only broadened.
‘It goes both ways. You can quit at any time, you know.’
When the school year started in the fall, I needed to take my daughter to tour her new school on her first day. I asked to take my lunch in the afternoon, so I could help my daughter. Though they approved it, when it came time for my lunch, they insisted I work through my lunch because they were being slammed…
By then, hubs had found a job with insurance and, even better, I’d been offered more hours teaching, though still not full-time. It was enough.
The next day I practically floated into the bank. I waited until 10 am, then told Mel I needed to talk with her. She replied that she was very busy and it would have to wait until after we closed. ‘Oh, I won’t be here then,’ I said.
She looked like I’d smacked her with a brick.
‘What?’ I smiled. ‘Remember that I needed to bring my daughter to her new school yesterday? You wouldn’t let me do that, so I’m doing it this afternoon.’
She didn’t get it at all. ‘You can’t just take an hour off when you-‘ I had to interrupt.
‘I’m not taking an hour off. I’m leaving. For good. At noon. You kept reminding me that I work ‘at will.’ Thanks for those reminders.
I’m leaving for good in two hours.’
While Mel fumed, I waited on customers. I practically sang my greetings to them and was so cheerful, customers kept asking me why I was so happy. I was delighted to tell them, ‘Because I’m leaving forever at noon!’
After a half-hour of that, Mel thought I should just go right away. And I did. I literally skipped right out the door, then gave Mel a very elaborate curtsey at the door.”
19. Want To Demand Employees Come In Early Without Pay? You Got It, Boss
“I work in a demanding industry. As a result, barely anyone in my department takes their unpaid 1-hour lunch break in full or at all, including myself. Most everyone just eats at their desk while working, including me. A lot of people work unpaid overtime as well, including me (for me, it was about 1-2 hours this week on my day off unpaid overtime to get on top of the work).
The manager/boss knows this happens – they see it occur on a daily basis, but don’t contest it because, you know, free labor.
Recently, the boss sent around an office-wide email ‘for a select few’ that stated, ‘work hours are work hours’. The email said they expect everyone to be at work 10-15 (unpaid) minutes early to ‘get a coffee’ and start work on the dot. They also said that the end of your work shift is when you stop working and that you can’t pack up anything prior, i.e..
If you have a cup on your desk, you have to wait until your work ends on the dot to put it in the dishwasher. Doing this 2-minute task prior to the end of your shift is not acceptable. There was more to the email, but it’s not relevant to this post.
I’m certain this email is partially directed at me because I arrive to work only a few minutes early, grab a cup of tea (takes 1 minute – they have instant hot water), and then start working.
I also asked to leave 10-minutes early last week (use 10-minutes of my unpaid break) to attend an appointment, which was met with discontent from my manager. Cue this week and the email that followed.
Now, this would be a reasonable policy if there was any form of time theft happening, but it’s the complete opposite. They are well aware that their employees are working through their lunch breaks and working overtime to stay on top of the high workload and essentially provide them with free labor.
Therefore, demanding employees come in early and remain strapped to their desks until the clock strikes at the end of the workday is not a reasonable policy. It’s just demeaning and glossing over the fact that they are getting free labor on a daily basis from dedicated employees.
So today, as a response to this email, I took my full 1-hour break for the first time in literally months.
I sat in the break room on my phone for 1-hour. This resulted in the manager walking past, seeing me doing this, and looking very unimpressed. They’re used to seeing me sitting in my office, working in between bites of food as a break. They walked past a second time while I was still in the break room, this time completely avoiding my gaze.
Having maliciously complied today, I’ve decided what to do moving forward to continue this malicious compliance.
From now on, I will come into work 5 minutes early and sit at my desk on my phone until my phone alarm signals that it’s time to start working. I will take my unpaid break for the full 1-hour during the day rather than sit at my desk working through this unpaid time. In a month, when they are used to me taking my full unpaid break, I will work through the day and take my 1-hour unpaid break exactly 1-hour before the end of my workday, meaning I will not return to the office after my break because my workday has ended (there is nothing in our contract that dictates when we can or can’t take our break).
I have and will continue to maliciously comply, denying them the free labor they took for granted and fully utilizing my unpaid personal time.”
18. No Longer Want To Talk To Me? That's Fine, I'll Just Laugh
“So this happened in early 2020 when everyone was still figuring out what to do, but it was already clear and well known that masks are a must-have if you leave your front door. For context I work at a McDonald’s as a host, usually, my main task is to help guests, give coloring pages/balloons to children, organize events, etc. But ever since about march 2020 I basically became a security guard and first line of offense against the anti-mask Karens and Kens.
So if you think this is the only story I got you are sorely mistaken.
This fine spring afternoon was coming to a close and at this point, I had already been called pig scum so many times that day that I was no longer taking any crap from these people. A man came in and because I was standing just in front of the entrance I could see that this guy was not wearing a mask.
So I walked towards him and asked him to please put on a mask. As you might expect this guy was not a big fan of that sentence, and after a good 5 minutes of me telling him that he is required by law to put on a mask, and him calling me every name in the book, he said something that kind of caught me by surprise:
‘I’m no longer talking to you!’
Now, this was weird because besides being our bouncer I was also the cashier (it was not a busy day and most of the orders came from our McDrive).
So I looked at him and asked:
‘Are you sure?’
‘YES, you can leave me alone now cause I’m just gonna ignore you!’
Okay, well this suddenly became interesting. My boss, who heard the man yelling, looked around the corner and asked if everything was alright to which I nodded and said I had everything under control. The guy just stood there in front of the cash register with his arms crossed looking smug.
As this was happening one of our regulars walked in, this is an older lady who rides her bike across town every day and orders a cup of coffee at each McDonald’s. So I greet her and ask if she wants the usual. She says yes, I take her €1 and say it’ll be right up. I walk around the angry guy who is now turning red.
I ring her up and go grab her coffee. At this point the guy starts yelling again:
‘Just what the heck is going on here?! Why are you helping her instead of me?’
To which I respond:
‘I’m sorry sir, you told me to leave you alone and that you were done talking to me.’
I swear I thought this guy looked like he was taught all the secrets of the universe, he looked angry, confused, heartbroken, and back to angry again all in the span of 5 seconds. And without saying another word he just angrily walked out. The older lady and I just couldn’t contain our laughter at this point.”
17. You Think I'm Dumb? Okay, You Can Help Me
“When I entered university I met through acquaintances a guy named Tom. Tom and I became friends and in general, l had no problem with him if it weren’t for two things, the first is that Tom did not strive to get good grades and usually bought the assignments or bribed the teachers to pass. The second was that Tom was incredibly smug, bragged about his dad, bragged about his money, and bragged about his career (which upset me, since, as he doesn’t actually do much work, he doesn’t know anything about our career).
Tom, other friends, and I used to team up, the reason we normally included him was that he used to pay for ALL the material, it may sound like a stupid reason but a project could be too expensive for a bunch of broke students. Even if we did this, we also assigned Tom easy tasks so he could help but every time we did it he would disengage and just pay for the materials.
The breaking point came when we had to team up for a final project for a certain subject. The teacher assigned us to large teams since he knew this project will be extremely expensive, he gave us two months for the project. We divide tasks, more or less they were like this: do the calculations: me, buy material: Tom, do tests: X and A, design and make the plate: Y and B, weld the plate: Z and C.
Even if we got specific tasks we often try to help each other and make sure things were all right.
At the start he compromised himself to buy ALL but once he noticed it will be a lot more expensive than he was used to he asked if we can all split the costs. We agreed.
I went ahead to do the calculations and finished one day after so that the others had plenty of time to do their tasks but for that to happen the material was needed.
Every week I and other members of our team asked Tom if he had already got the material and he told us that he was into it. The others could not start working until Tom got the material but as the delivery date was getting closer and closer they began to ask other teams and rely on common friends to advance what they could.
Well, two or three days before the delivery we asked him AGAIN and he replied that he didn’t get what I specified because ‘It didn’t exist’ (this was not possible since the first thing I look for was that there were commercial values of everything we needed) ‘but that he got something similar’.
Let’s say I had asked him for a 0.1nF (0.1×10^-9) capacitor, he got one of 10pF (10×10^-12), the difference was abysmal like comparing the backyard of a house with a soccer field and he did this for every material on the list. When I remarked to him that this stuff wouldn’t work out for us and explained to him why, he got angry and stopped answering our texts and phone calls.
We were all mad since he bought that useless material with our money.
We needed the correct material even if it was a little amount right now, but the others were in class so I had to go. It should be noted that I did not carry much money that day just enough to eat, I was also getting sick. So I went to the center of the city with fever, hungry, and with a worried significant other who insisted that it was best for me to go to my house instead of getting the material, however, that would have meant that I would fail so I refused.
I got what I needed (as I said I had made sure that the material I requested existed), my significant other got me something with the little money he had (he was also a broke student at that time), accompanied me to deliver the material, and took me home while our teammates did what they could.
When I showed Tom that the material I had asked for existed he kept looking the other way and pretending to be ignorant.
The next day our other teammates also went to the center of the city to buy what was missing and I helped them finish the project even though I was sick. We ended up paying double what was meant and delivering the project at the last minute.
We couldn’t get him out of our team since our teacher forbade us. He didn’t want to know why and justified himself by pointing out that ‘We should learn to work in a group’ and ‘Solving problems while working with people will be common in the industry and part of growing up.’
I promised myself to never work with Tom again even when he suggested it many times after.
I was getting over it but later I found he was talking trash about me about ‘How I felt I was such a big deal’ that ‘I didn’t know a thing’ and that ‘He could put me in my place, but didn’t since he was a better person.’
This took us to the Malicious Compliance.
Next year, online classes started. Most of our generation had already finished their career but I stood for an extra semester so I could take some optional assignments I liked (They were optional to me since I was in a different specialty area).
The teacher that taught one of the subjects was one of my favorites, he was kind and explained everything, he was also incorruptible. His system was also friendly, he grades with 100% assignments.
Well, turns out Tom was in this specific subject with me, only that for him it wasn’t optional. He didn’t know the teacher, nor know anyone and since we were online he couldn’t make new friends or contact our classmates.
He noticed that I was also in the class and texted me after almost a year of not contacting me.
He told me that he didn’t understand anything and wanted help. We hadn’t even started and the teacher had just uploaded a document explaining what we were going to do step by step in the NEXT CLASS, along with ONE ASSIGNMENT (whose delivery date was one class after exploring the procedure and seeing an example).
Well since he told everyone that ‘I didn’t know a thing’ I started acting like that, I was the dumbest person you can imagine. When he asked me something I told him that I had no clue but I thought it was solved using the X method (non-related but complicated method) and then I started asking him complicated things as if they were needed to solve our homework even though they weren’t at all.
HE DIDN’T EVEN NOTICE, it was obvious that he hadn’t even read the assignment or the procedure.
He got scared and didn’t even try, resigning after a week. This was before the first assignment had to be handed in. He failed the subject and couldn’t graduate since this wasn’t the first assignment he owed.
None of this would’ve happened if he had just read 4 pages that were 1 click away.”
16. Read The Employee Manual? Sure, I'll Do Just That
“I was working in a small hospital as a security guard to help pay my way through college. I am a male with long hair and my boss was a clean-cut beefy ex-football player who hated that I was far more intelligent (pre-med) and could handle situations far better than he ever expected me to.
I helped install a security camera system on every entrance and busy hallway of the hospital.
Rather than eating meals by myself in the cafeteria I would take my meals to the security office and watch the cameras since I could cover more ground and still eat in peace.
I would do the paperwork there and watch the cameras as well. He came to me one night hoping to catch me slacking… ‘You know… You look lazy just sitting here so please read the darn Employee Manual while you are sitting here…
You might actually LEARN something!’
So one night I get bored enough to pull down the Employee Manual and read it between my rounds. Sure enough, they weren’t paying us for ‘on-call’ time. Not only that, they were paying us wrong for when we got called in during our ‘on-call’ hours, and any time we got called we were supposed to be paid from the time we were paged until we arrived back home at no less than 1 hour per call and rounded up to the half-hour.
I promptly photocopied the page, highlighted the section, placed a copy in each security guard’s messages box, and across the hall on the Human Resources lady’s desk. I even printed off the timesheets and corrected them for proper pay I was owed ($700 or so) from the past 2 years and left copies in HR and my boss’s desk.
The next day during my day off I received a call from our secretary saying I needed to come in immediately.
I walked into the secretary just smiling at me, my supervisor grinning from ear to ear, and my boss mad as heck. I sat quietly while he berated me about this nonsense move I had just pulled. To which I replied… ‘If I recall you told me to ‘read the Employee Manual so I don’t look lazy’ so I did.’
At this point, he was threatening me and screaming so loudly he could be heard way down the hallway.
He was threatening to fire me for ‘insubordination’ and a list of other ‘infractions’.
I simply stared at him and said ‘I think we should talk to Human Resources.’ Stood up and walked across the hall with him screaming at me the whole way as he stood up to follow me.
I knocked on the open door… ‘Hey Rhonda! Did you get my memo and corrected timesheet?’
She simply smiled and said ‘I sure did! I’ll cut your check as soon as I can!’
I replied ‘And did you catch Larry threatening to fire me for reading the Employee Manual like he told me to?’
‘I sure did hun…
and you don’t need to worry about your job. You are safe here and if you need to file a complaint we heard everything.’
I turned around to find Larry fuming and red in the face. He turned around and walked out of the hospital to go cool off.
Our secretary, my supervisor, and HR all just stood there and broke out laughing.
I looked at our secretary and said. ‘Could you please log my hour for the time I had to come in for this?’
Best $700 check I ever cashed!”
15. Threaten Me With Failure To Comply? I'll Deliver Everything Back To You
“This is a story from my past when the markets were tanking about a decade ago.
I worked for a small company (less than 12 people) headquartered in a northeastern (US) city about 4 hours from my home. I was employed for over a year and we definitely had our struggles as we were a small start-up that had a lot of politics. I became sick with cancer that Fall and my surgery and treatment ended on December 31st… as I was determined not to go into the new year with this burden.
I was given 10 days into the New Year to return to work as I would be fully recovered. I had to provide a doctor’s note to both my employer and insurance company (I was on temp disability) that I was fit to return to work.
I work remotely from home and I was the only employee to do so. It was treated as a bonus by my management team.
This becomes important as I was required to be in the HQ every Thursday for an 8 am team meeting but I was not allowed to book a hotel. They fought my travel expenses every month down to the mile. Once my expenses were rejected as I added 5 miles to their web map as I needed to justify my need to get gas and my departure from the highway – I mistakenly submitted actual mileage.
They trained me well.
I started each Thursday at 3 am driving to make the team meeting and was required to ‘work’ the full day which meant a departure after 6 pm. So 1 workday each week was 3 am – 11 pm (depending on traffic). It was not fun but there was going to be a significant upside that would have made it worthwhile.
I was ‘laid off’ while at the doctor’s office getting my note.
I was surprised to check my blackberry (yes it was a long time ago) with an email that read simply, ‘As the group has failed to live up to the expectations we had, we have decided to close your team and group. You have 48 hours to return all company property.’
I should add that no one from management ever actually checked in or asked how I was doing either during my treatment or after.
I was pretty angered by this email as we grew the company’s revenue by over 31% YOY. The email made me actually read my guidelines for employment and I found out that I had to only ‘make the equipment available to them’ and I replied simply that they were welcome to come pick up the equipment (PC/monitor…etc.) but I required 48 hours notice and I would require them to arrive and depart during business hours.
I was told I was being petty.
I had months of expenses awaiting reimbursement which equated to thousands that I had little faith they would be paid to me as they were submitted before my treatment.
They informed me that if I mailed back all supplies they would pay it along with my outstanding expenses. I didn’t trust them and told them that if they made arrangements at one of three possible locations (their choice), I would drop off the equipment but they would pay all shipping and packaging costs directly to the service provider.
I delivered every packing box, notebook, business card, monitor, and laptop. Anything I had ever touched of theirs with the explicit instructions that as I had been threatened several times with ‘failure to comply’ warnings in their follow on emails about the condition of each item. I photographed every item!
Apparently, they were not very nice to the packing store either, as they made an impression by just arranging the service. The store employees shared this with me while I unloaded the car. I watched them bubble wrap empty boxes and carefully place those boxes inside larger boxes.
Lesson learned: It pays to read the terms of employment and just be a genuinely nice person.”
14. Your Deal Is Off, And If You Don't Like It, Just Quit
“I used to work for a company that had a weird ‘work culture.’ Everyone (including the CEO, directors, and the owner) worked way too much, and some would proudly say that they could only sleep after drinking because they have so much work they can’t tune off. I was working 12h a day, plus commute, all without overtime while being paid less than the market average for 8h.
I was dumb, but I loved what I did, the company has a big name in my country so it helped build my curriculum and I had the chance of tackling very interesting projects. So, I saw it as a stepping stone to better jobs.
About 8 months in, though, I started to break. I had stopped exercising and gained weight, my mental health was taking a big dive and I would wake up at 4 am thinking about things I wasn’t able to finish, and then I couldn’t fall back asleep.
So, I handed in my resignation. The CEO, who I had a good work relationship with, called me in to ask what was going on. My director was present. I was honest. He asked what they could do to keep me on the team. I said we desperately needed more people in our department (my director nodded) and I had to start working one hour later so I could at least go for a walk every morning.
He agreed with both of those things and said that they were already working on the budget to get two more people to our department and he’d ask for RH to post the openings.
My director had a vacation planned and during that couple of weeks, I got to work one hour later, and got stink eyes from my coworkers but oh well, started to feel better.
Interviews happened during that time and by the end of the two weeks, we had two new members on our team. Then, on the third week when my director is back, we are all called into a meeting about two big projects that will require every hand on deck – the company was preparing for an IPO and we had to work on it.
The second day of the week, the director calls me for a chat and says I can’t be getting in late.
I said I wasn’t late, my hours were changed to start later, as the talk with CEO. She says that I can’t start at a different time than everyone else and that everything was too busy for it anyway. I either accept it or I quit. I was sure she felt she could spare me now that we had two new members, or that I wouldn’t want to leave because having helped organize an IPO is great for your resume.
Not worth it. I quit. She was surprised.
Notice in my country is usually a month unless the employer asks you not to go – they’d still pay, but if you’re angry or whatever you wouldn’t have time to steal information or cause damage. I get to work the next day and find out one of the new hires had also quit, too much work for her.
I see my boss calling HR and asking them to cancel the e-mail they had talked about earlier while throwing glances at me. I am sure she was going to ask me to not show up anymore, but with one person leaving it would be harder to handle everything.
I keep working, as usual, don’t want to damage my professional image. They find someone to replace me that week since they still had resumes from the previous cycle.
The second previously-hired person quits. Replacement quit, then a second replacement showed up and I wasn’t allowed to train him in case the first one quit because of something bad I said but he broke a record and gave up after the very first day, all before the end of my third week of notice. That week I had gone through a great interview for another company (yay lunch hour) and I believe they called my company for reference.
HR must have told my director since she suddenly started acting friendly to me and would stop my coworkers whenever they made snarky remarks about me leaving – did I mention that the work environment there sucked?
The first day of my fourth week, the director calls me and says maybe we were both too harsh in our decisions. That she is willing to allow me to get to work 30m later if I cut my lunch hour by 30m, and she is fine ignoring my quitting since it was clearly a decision made by impulse.
I said I would consider staying if she matched my offer from the other company plus 10%, went back to the previously-agreed starting work 1h later and I would have to have everything in writing before the end of the day since I wouldn’t want to screw the other company over.
She said I was doing her dirty (in better terms). Something about hurting the company, no loyalty, think of your future, after everything we have done for you, you are wasting an opportunity, you aren’t being professional, why would you even think of quitting.
When she said that last bit, I smiled and said it was her idea, after all. That we had a deal I was willing to uphold despite everything bad that working there had, but she said the deal was off and if I didn’t like it, I should quit, so I just… complied. I didn’t like it. I quit.
We had a third replacement for me that week.
I trained her. She lasted 2 weeks. The two extra people for the department were never brought in, as they were trying to cut costs to better prepare for the IPO. 2 months later the whole team was different, except the director, who was there holding strong.
CEO said he was sad to see me leave but he understood it. HR confirmed to me at my exit interview that he had been talking to owner and directors on how to change the ‘work culture’ they had been cultivating in order to ‘retain talents’ better. HR friend later told me that the owner stopped that nonsense. Oh well, I tried.”
13. Didn't Want To Pay Me 10 Dollars? Enjoy Losing Thousands
“I started working for one of the major airlines at my local airport as a baggage handler. I absolutely loved the job, I just enjoyed being around planes from the ground level. When I started there were no full-time positions available so I was working part-time 6-hour nights 5 times a week.
The way it usually works is each gate has a lead (the person with extra training to do the load planning and scanning and towing the planes to the runway as well as guiding them in) and a few baggage handlers.
Now I had only been there a few months but I was working my butt off and showing that I was a team player.
I decided I was gonna try to become a lead even though they usually want you to work a year or so as a handler first. I was confident and ended up passing the training course with ease. The problem was they had no availability for more leads so I was put into what was basically an on-call lead kind of thing where they could upgrade me for the day if they needed more leads.
Now, whenever they upgrade you to lead even if it’s for a single flight they have to pay you the extra 1.75$ per hour leads get for your whole shift (remember I work 6-hour days so 10.50$ is the cost to make me a lead for my shift). now for a few months everything was great, I was a part-time baggage handler but I was working as a lead for my whole shift every shift and I was loving every second of it, something about towing huge planes full of people to the runway was just awesome to me.
Enter everyone’s favorite viral infection. Within months the airline industry is tanking pretty hard as nobody wants to travel and get stuck somewhere. Supervisors are being told to cut costs everywhere they can which makes sense given the circumstances. Cue up the night of my MC.
It’s maybe 11 pm and I’m on till 1 am, supervisors have sent a large chunk of workers home and those of us left are being sent all over the airport to cover the flights we do still have coming.
I get a call from the office that assigns your flights and am told to go grab a box and a walkie (the stuff needed to plug into the plane to talk to the flight deck).
They tell me to head to the gate, the flight’s landing in 5 and to just put in my request for lead (when asked to be a lead you put it in on the company app and a supervisor approves your pay raise for the day).
I get to my gate, check the load coming off the plane, brief the handlers on what’s coming down, and we all get to our spots to bring the plane in.
I see the plane coming down the lane to my gate and at the same time, my zone supervisor drives up to my gate and asks me to come over. He then tells me something along the lines of ‘Hey man we can’t upgrade you to lead right now we just can swing that extra expense right now.’
I respond with, ‘Okay so who’s going to bring this plane?’ Nobody else at the gate is lead trained and supervisors are not allowed to do any of our work because of the union rules.
He then tells me he is going to go find another lead to bring it in and to just assist him when he arrives. So I’m like sure whatever.
Now it’s important to note that planes have very tight metrics for how long it can take to bring a flight in, unload and reload for the next flight. The flight pulls up to the edge of my gate and comes to a stop as there’s no lead there guiding them in so the flight just sits there waiting and the entire gate crew is also just standing around waiting.
20 minutes go by and my radio I still have on me goes off and the office is ticked off.
They want to know why the heck I’m holding this flight short and not bringing it in, to which obviously I reply with ‘What do you mean X supervisor told me they couldn’t afford to pay me for lead work today and that he would find someone else.’
He then asks me if I can please just bring it in for him and I said, ‘Sorry but if you’re not willing to pay me to do the lead work then I’m only going to do the handler work I’m being paid for.’
As it turns out they sent too many leads home this night and the ones they did have were all busy on flights already.
After about 45 minutes a lead from 2 terminals over finally strolls up and were able to unload the plane as usual but that 45 minutes the plane sat idle at the gate cost thousands in extra fuel plus O.T for flight attendants forced into mandatory overtime from the situation, not to mention all the passengers who were ticked off from the extra wait who all were comped some credits with the airline for the trouble.
I also come to find out the supervisor’s bonus was based on flight turn time and this 45 minutes short hold probably cost him his bonus and a write-up.”
12. Don't Want My Crew To Eat? Fine, I'll Make You Pay Even More
“I own a small video production company. There is one simple rule to keep morale high on set: feed your people well.
We had a fairly big project coming up. Instead of the usual 3-4 crew members, it was going to take 17 crew members. We submitted an itemized budget to our client for them to review. We usually allot $15 for breakfast, $20 for lunch, and $30 for dinner.
I know that may seem high, but sometimes these shooting days can consistently run for 10-12+ hours.
It’s incredibly important to keep people fed well to keep crew morale high throughout the shoot. Meals are short but planned events in the schedule, not unpaid breaks, and if all you have to look forward to is crappy sandwiches during a long and demanding shift, the collective efficiency begins to fall by day two.
I have worked on many sets like that (including ones with NO meals) and it sucks. I never want to do that to any of my crew members. Good food is the least you can do.
So we send the budget to the client, and all heck breaks loose on a couple of levels. They decide they want something a little more for the set. But they also don’t want to have to hire more crew or shoot for more days, as that would balloon the cost.
It was still within the scope of what we could do, and it was an exciting project. The problem was that they wanted to help offset the potential cost of the extra art direction by reducing the rate for the crew and the meal costs.
I’ve already offered the crew these positions for the day rates they requested, and I’m not budging on that. I don’t want cheap, I want good.
And if they want cheap but not good, then they can go somewhere else.
Over an 8-day shoot, the total of $65 per person per day was almost $9k total. They wanted to reduce it to $4k. Get the heck out. You’re talking bare minimum for that many people.
I called the client and explained that it was very important to not take away from that part of the budget, but they won’t budge.
‘I don’t even spend that much for food on vacation!’
Okay well, this isn’t a vacation and you’re not the one working a physically and mentally demanding 12-hour shift, every day, for over a week in a different city.
Then I have a devious idea. The film industry has lots of jargon that doesn’t always make sense at face value. Things like ‘stinger’ mean an extension cord, a ‘C47’ is a clothespin, and a ‘Texas applebox’ means a specially made wooden box laid down on its largest side.
So I comply maliciously by saying, ‘Okay, as I have said, it’s very important to keep the meal budget as it is… but… I think I can get it down to $6,000 or so.’
They eventually agree to it.
Then, on a completely unrelated note, of course, I talk about the art direction. ‘Now, unfortunately, it may still cost a little more than before, because, with the new style, the art department is going to need the Craft Services budget increased from $3k to $6.5k.
I know it’s not cheap, but they’ll be able to make exactly what you’re looking for. That kind of style is in very high demand, so those materials are pretty expensive to get.’
‘Also, the shipping for the extra Craft Services supplies are going to cost a few hundred.’
‘Also, the extra construction for Craft Services will cost a few hundred.’
We chat about options, but they accept it.
They are paying more, but they still saved money and got what they want. Here’s the thing though: ‘Craft Services’ has nothing to do with the art department.
That’s the snacks and drinks available on set throughout the day and the people who prepare them. The art department did need that budget increased because of the smaller meal budget. Just so happens that all the other departments did too.
The style they were asking for was in high demand but didn’t actually cost that much more.
Craft services ended up equipped with breakfast sandwiches, donuts, coffee, protein bars, fruit, and many other snacks for breakfast. Various forms of catering from local pizza, Italian, Mexican, and Americana restaurants for lunch, happened to appear at craft services for serving. Desserts, expensive charcuterie boards, deluxe trail mixes, veggie platters, lots of sparkling waters, bottled Starbucks, lemonades, and about a dozen other kinds of drinks throughout the day in nearly unlimited supply.
I can’t list everything, but it was much more than we usually supplied, including full meals.
I let the crew know the situation and that breakfast and lunch would be served at craft services with appropriate break times. Then I let them know that the limit for dinner each night would now be $50 and would be after we wrapped each day. Oh heck yes.
Some days, some people were tired and just wanted to go to sleep after the shoot.
No problem, your meal budget rolls over indefinitely!
By the time the shoot was finished, we had been to many of the nicer restaurants in the area. By the final night, it was a blowout. Almost everyone had a decent budget rolled over due to the occasional fast food dinner. The average bill, with fancy drinks, appetizers, and to-go orders included was well over $100 per person.
My company still profited plenty and all of those crew members are still happy and even prioritizing working on our projects. Being well fed and well paid on a set is the kind of thing that’s not forgotten in this industry. It’s not a waste, it’s an investment.”
11. My University Told Me To Steal $9000 From Them, So I Did
“This story is back from when I was attending university several years ago. I was the president of the school club, we had good attendance but limited interest in leadership positions. I think this was largely due to being an LGBT organization and the university lists all university org officers on their website for anyone with internet access to see. But anyway, that meant I was the only acting officer of this club making me the secretary and treasurer also.
The other ‘officers’ were actually previous club presidents who had graduated, you just needed three student ID numbers to remain an active club.
I had planned a large ice cream social that went great! I rented a ballroom on campus (free for student orgs), had ice cream catering, a live band, and almost 100 students in attendance. It was a great way to begin the school year! Anyway, it all cost something like $1,021.17 (not the actual amount, but something like that).
There were two methods to pay for this kind of thing: petition in advance for university funds or pay it yourself and submit a reimbursement after the fact. In the past, the school had taken 6 months to pay a vendor I used and it was a stressful experience because I wanted them to be paid, I felt terrible having to just keep saying ‘the university is working on it’ and going to the student org finance office twice a week to ask them about it for months.
So I figured I’d take the hit and wait for the funds myself, I could sweat it out on student loans and get the band and caterer paid in a timely fashion.
There’s a bunch of compliance paperwork to fill out, you have to submit itemized receipts, etc., etc. long story short it’s a process. But I got it all filed and I waited.
About 4 months later I got an email prompting me of an activity in the student org finance portal to approve a direct deposit to my account.
You have to confirm the amount. I wish I’d been drinking water because I would have spat it out dramatically, but the amount was $10,211.70. They had clearly just misplaced the decimal point. I could ‘accept’ or ‘comment’ on it so I wrote that the amount should have been $1,021.17.
In an hour I got a response back, along the lines of ‘Yes, the amount is $10211.70.’
So I responded ‘No, it should be $1021.17.’
And the response was that she ‘couldn’t find an issue.’
Now look, I’m terribly dyslexic (as in I actually am, I sometimes have to clarify this because it seems to be a quirky thing people without a learning disability say to play off a mistake) so I was genuinely thinking maybe I was misreading it and causing her to be confused? Maybe for who knows why the computer put three numbers after the decimal so I was reading $1021.170 and thinking I saw $10211.70 or something.
I had a friend look at it and she confirmed I was, in fact, reading it correctly.
But hey, maybe the lady in the finance office was also dyslexic? Or overworked? Or could care less to actually look? Whatever the case, I can explain myself better in person so I walked down to the office… I was a regular at this point. There was hardly ever a line because nearly everything is done online.
So I go up to the desk and say there’s been a mistake on a reimbursement request for a club event. I’m told to have a seat and she’ll chat with me in a moment.
So I waited for about half an hour while she sat on her iPhone at the desk, then she calls me up. I explain I was over-reimbursed and she says, ‘Look, as I’ve told you, there’s nothing wrong.’
So I said, ‘But it’s off by a decimal place.’
She kind of just sighed and said she could deny the reimbursement or I could accept it and leave… She seemed to be getting very upset with me, probably because I was constantly asking her the previous year about the payment for that vendor.
I said I would accept it and left. When you ‘accept’ you can make a comment so I basically typed in the comment box that I tried to remedy the situation and was told there was no issue repeatedly, over chat, and in person, and then was threatened to not be reimbursed at all. I took screenshots of all the messages in case I had to defend myself.
After a few business days, the funds were direct deposited into my bank account the university has on file for tuition/student loans. I let it sit there for a couple of years while I was a student, expecting them to find the error and demand the funds back. When I was getting close to graduating and that never happened, I gave the money to a member in my club whose parents stopped paying his tuition because he started testosterone.
They pulled funds past the deadline for federal student loans and obviously wouldn’t co-sign for private loans.
Interestingly enough, for any events over $15k you had to file invoices in advance and have it pre-approved. Anything under that they recommend you do this but you can be reimbursed with proper receipts and paperwork. I think that’s why it didn’t raise any alarms in the computer system… at least that’s all I can reason. It kind of haunts me to this day that I might randomly owe $9k at some point. And I just don’t understand what I was saying wrong that she couldn’t understand me, and I worry I should have gone to her supervisor. But I was 19 so I just did as I was told.”
10. Want Me To Travel To Your Office? I Won't Come Until You Accept My Travel Request
“In the late 1980s, a company in New Jersey contracted me to set up a mainframe-based eMail system. They had dozens of sites, large and small all over the country. Many of the small offices were staffed by people who had absolutely no experience with computers, so after the hardware was installed, we’d send two of our people out to train them. The program was proceeding nicely when the company was acquired through a hostile takeover.
The new owner was a tiny company that specialized in these takeovers. Their model was to buy a company, sell off the valuable assets and liquidate the rest. The guy they installed as the new CEO began by cutting expenses. One of the new rules was that all interstate travel had to be approved in advance by two levels of management.
People were leaving in droves, some voluntarily, but a lot were called in on a Friday, given their last paycheck, and escorted to the door.
Among them were those people who did remote email setup. (They were in Chicago running a training seminar when they got the ax.)
One day I got a request from this new CEO’s admin requesting that I give him and his staff of hatchetmen access to our email. We fast-tracked the installation of the hardware and I set up their user Ids. All that was left was for someone to show them how to use it.
The only one left qualified to do that was my office mate who I had trained to take over the system when my contract ended. But our manager had resigned, and her manager had been let go in one of the purges. According to the org chart we now reported to the CIO, the only C level left from the old company. He knew his days were numbered so he wasn’t particularly motivated.
My office mate filled out the travel request form and sent it to the CIO for approval. He spent about a week carefully considering it, weighed the alternatives, and finally decided that this trip was necessary. He approved it and sent it across the river to his boss, the new CEO.
Another week went by and the CEO’s admin called me wanting to know when someone would set up their email.
‘Hmm, I’ll have to check with the guy who does that. Let me put him on the speakerphone.’
‘Yes Ma’am. I have the request. I will come to your office as soon as your boss approves the travel request.’
‘What travel request?’
‘Per his orders, all interstate travel must be approved by two levels of management. I report to the CIO and he reports to your boss.’
‘You don’t need a travel request to come into the city.’
‘Sorry Ma’am I live and work in New Jersey.
Your office is in New York. Those are two different states. The rules issued by your boss specifically say that without prior approval, travel expenses will not be reimbursed. From where I live I will have to park my car at the train station, take the train into the city, then a subway uptown to your office. There is no way I am going to shell out the funds until I know I will be reimbursed. As soon as I get approval I will call you to schedule the trip. Have a nice day.’
It was almost 3 weeks until the CEO finally got around to approving the $20 travel request.”
9. Don't Leave The Locker Room? You Got It
“Several years ago, I was a High School PE teacher. The district I worked in was Title I with a huge population of ELL and low-income kids (95% or so). For hygiene reasons, we required the kids to wear PE uniforms and change for PE. Kids also showered after class. Because of our students’ socio-economic standards, I always had spare clothes and towels the kids could use and offered to wash PE clothes weekly for students who didn’t have access to laundry facilities.
This practice was also done by the male PE teacher and has actually been around since before I started.
Before I get to the malicious compliance, there are a few more details you need to set the scene. Classroom management in teaching is a whole art in and of itself. PE is kind of next level because you have 30+ kids all running around and a lot of area to cover.
In addition, the genius that designed our school decided not to have the locker rooms connect to the gym but rather put a hallway in between. This was somewhat of a management nightmare because there were basically 3 places you had to supervise and there wasn’t a way to watch all 3 at once. On top of that, locker rooms had to be locked between classes.
The laundry facility was also located in the hallway between the gym and locker rooms.
Two-way radios were also frequently used by all PE teachers in the district as well as admin, counselors, etc. for safety and to find kids when outside, before school/after school, etc.
Finally, because our district was a decent size, but rural, it was a stepping stone for a lot of want to be admin.
They would come in for a year or two and then leave. This revolving door of admin also made it a bit frustrating because rules and climate changed every few years while people tried to leave their ‘mark’ to get hired for the next gig.
Now onto the malicious compliance. As I mentioned, it was always a little crazy trying to supervise kids everywhere but for the most part, the kids were really good and respectful and we had a pretty good system.
I would often duck out of the locker room between classes to start laundry, let kids into the locker room during a class period, or open it up for sports teams leaving early at the end of the day. These sort of frequent interruptions happened more often than you would think but we made it work. That is until we got Attila the Hun as Principal.
This particular chick thought her crap didn’t stink and came in with the idea that everything in the school sucked and it was her job to fix it. She was also a heavy drinker that had learned to work the system and stepped on everyone she could trying to get to the top. Well one day, she wandered past PE while sneaking into the building late to work and decided this was her time to make a point.
I had left to go put laundry in the dryer and she proceeded to chew my behind out for leaving the locker room unsupervised.
Keep in mind, this was during a passing period when other teachers are allowed to step out of their room to go to the bathroom, make copies, etc. This applied to everyone except myself and the male teacher in PE (I should add I was the union rep and she hated me for it because the union held her accountable.) I was told under no circumstances was I allowed to leave the locker room during the day unless it was to go to class and that no students were allowed anywhere without supervision.
Okay boss, you got it. I also need to mention that everyone else in the district knew how much she sucked and most other building admin and teachers had also had run-ins with her. I was also pretty well respected having been in the district a while and worked in several other buildings and had been in teacher leadership positions.
The day she told me that, I put my plan into place and made sure I always had my two-way radio with me.
I laid low for a week or two and then put my plan into action. First thing, I needed to put laundry in the dryer. So I radioed ‘HS Girls PE to Attila the Hun’ over the entire district radio. She responded thinking it was urgent to which I stated ‘I need to go put clothes into the dryer and need coverage in the locker room.’
She tried to tell me that I didn’t need to radio for this to which I reminded her that she insisted we never left the locker room unless it was to start class.
About 15 minutes later she strolls down rather ticked off to let me go do my mundane task. I am instantly flooded with text messages from other admin, teachers, etc., who have access to radios and heard it go out, laughing.
A few days later, she sent a kid down to change because they are going to in-house and had gang-affiliated clothing on. Kid comes to me while I’m teaching asking to open the locker room.
You guessed it, I got on the radio and asked her to come down and unlock the door and wait, reminding her that kids are not to be unsupervised. This goes on for about a week with about 4-5 radio calls a day. Any time students, sports teams, or anyone else needed to get into the locker room, or I had tasks to do, it went out over the radio for all to hear.
Reminding her each time of her rules.
She finally caught on to what I was doing and then started ignoring me on the radio. At that point, I would radio to all other admin in the school/district or anyone else that could come and assist since it appeared our admin was unavailable (also not a good look for her.)
I think this malicious compliance was one of the last straws for Attila because shortly thereafter she was fired.
I think the superintendent got word of all her shadiness but my constantly on the radio didn’t help. He ended up coming to me (and the male teacher) letting us know we could go back to actually doing our jobs and we wouldn’t be punished.
As an update, she was subsequently fired from other admin jobs in our state every year for about 3 years. I have zero regrets.”
8. We Can't Take Any Action Right Now? Can't Say I Didn't Warn You
“I worked at this mall shoe store in almost every mall about 12 years ago, I was about 20 at the time. It’s kind of an alternative scene store, like Zumiez, but very small (starts with a J and rhymes with bernies). A friend got me an assistant manager job to replace him when he quit to be a plumber, the manager was kind of a friend too, Adam.
This was real low-level, low-paid retail.
Just to get a sense of scope, we (2 managers) worked about 60 hours a week. We made commission, but this store location (my hometown), had so little traffic that our checks had to be manually adjusted every week UP to minimum wage. Each store had 3-4 part-timers too, usually high school kids. So it was good news after a year or so we both got a ‘promotion’ to move to a different store at a different mall, much nicer and 30 min away.
Much more sales mean my weekly pay went up to a couple of dollars more an hour!
So problems started after about 6 months at our new store. Our district manager Andy hired a dude in his 30s as manager, and some other 20-something girl. One of my friends Mike worked there part-time as well. He was also an apprentice toolmaker in high school so he didn’t need the money.
Just came in 1 day a week to receive and stock shoes, and grab some pizza. Apparently, the dude was doing some awful stuff, so the assistant ended up quitting, and they fired the dude.
That’s some foreshadowing, Andy is bad at external hires. So he hired a new manager, Jeff, but asked if I could go back to the crappy store for a while to help the new guy settle in.
I said sure. He also had a 3rd manager he hired who he wanted Adam to train for a few months so she could go to another store as well. Sounds good, I’m a team player.
Well turns out this new guy Jeff, who Adam actually somewhat knew in the tattooed, hardcore guy scene, was kind of a screw-up himself. I felt bad at first. He was kind of scatterbrained, customers didn’t like him, he was always dirty and kind of smelled bad.
After the first 2 weeks, he came in smiling carrying a microwave for the back room.
‘Look, we can have hot lunches now.’
Plopped it on our glass case where we check customers out and a crapload of live roaches fell out all over the place. There were roaches in the store from there on out, I would see them every morning when I flipped the lights on.
Great now I don’t want to bring my own food here.
Then bad stuff starts happening. He would start coming in a couple of hours late when I opened the store. Not a huge deal, just annoying as crap. I generally wouldn’t get to eat breakfast, so lunch would get pushed back a couple of hours so I could leave the store. (Yes you couldn’t shut the gate and go to the food court.
The mall would call our DM Andy and tell him we closed outside of hours. Do it occasionally, or even open late after 10 am, and they can fine our store which means we’d get written up for sure). He would even call out sometimes which means I would work 2 or 3 doubles in a week. This is supposed to happen only once, managers get 1 day off during the week so the other person has to work 9-9:30.
Part-timers didn’t come in until 5 usually so you’re out of luck. It’s very irritating to have it sprung on you, several times.
Remember we were also ‘salary’, so no overtime. I would also be on the receiving end of unhappy emails from corporate. When Jeff would open, he would come in late, and occasionally ‘forget’ to deposit the cash sales for the day in the sealed envelope to the bank, that’s in the same mall as us…
They would turn up at the bank a few days late, apparently in cut open bags. This is where I made the first call to Andy. Told him the whole thing. Basically told me to sit tight, he’ll keep an eye on things.
Well, things got worse. He would sometimes bail in the middle of the day for a few hours on end. And products started to go missing.
Every Tuesday AM, we’d have to come in 30min earlier and do a little mini-audit. Basically a dozen or so different shoes of specific ski numbers, and enter in the POS our on-hand quantity. I noticed some of the more expensive shoes we sold are missing, when I know they weren’t sold, Diesels, pumas, timberlands, Nikes.
Turns out that when my buddy Mike would do the inventory on the weeknight things got delivered, Jeff would just check off the totals received for him.
Of course, a handful of things were ‘missing’ each week. Almost never were things actually missing from boxes when I did it. FCs were pretty good about sending inventory. I knew this was going to be bad news. I knew the mini-audits were used to pick up on internal theft. We also had a yearly audit that was coming in 6 or so months. Basically, you count every item in the store to account for missing and stolen stuff.
1.5% product loss is considered very bad and could result in us getting written up. Remember that point for later.
Called Andy a second time and got the same response. Ok, been telling Adam the whole time as well. I know he’ll stick up for me if anything goes down, but said just to keep tracking everything. So in true addict fashion, kept calling out, kept taking things, kept ‘losing’ cash deposits.
What really set me off was I found out he was blaming some of the crap on me to our fellow mall people. Mutual friends at other stores, saying cash deposits sometimes go missing when I work.
Uh bro, no they don’t. This is a dog-crap job but I’m not getting fired for $300. He was also selling substances to people out of the store and bribing my friend with it to come in early during the week so he can leave the mall for a couple of hours.
This really ticked me off because at 20 years old I had this dumb idea I wanted to possibly join the military and go into law enforcement. Never been fired or arrested or any of the crap before (still haven’t), so I wanted no part of being around this dude.
Called Andy again and this time I was serious. Told him about the whole illegal substances issue in the store too.
Basically said this guy is making me look bad too, come and test him, do something. I’ll call the cops for you if you want. I don’t know why he wasn’t doing anything. Andy came in once and wrote me up for playing my iPod over the speakers, for breaking company policy. Why are you letting this happen? In a nutshell, he said he can’t do anything for now until Adam is done training his new assistant so she could go run her new store.
I’d be able to go work with Adam again in the good mall.
Called Adam the next day and told him what Andy said. Asked if she’s good enough to cut loose so I can get out. He said no problem at all. The next week I was out, making a couple of dollars more, AND in a better mall with a Taco Bell even. My run with Jeff was only about 3 months.
Things went super downhill from there.
They got a new assistant in Jeff’s store, to train under him (yikes), but all the part-timers were still there. They kept texting me all the cool stories. Well, apparently he ramped up stealing funds and stealing shoes. Eventually, those mini-audits caught up to him. One night, he left the store an hour before closing, leaving a part-timer alone (against policy).
Closing time came and went, she thought it was funny, but had no idea what to do. She didn’t have keys or know how to close the store at all. Security got involved, called Andy, and eventually, Jeff got back to the store an hour late.
Andy was told by HQ to write him up the next day, BUT, also bring another area lead in our district to audit the store ahead of schedule and inquire about all the missing cash deposits.
Andy didn’t realize the scope of the stolen funds. Apparently, several thousands never made it back to the bank at that point. Andy, Jeff, and another manager or something audited the store while it was open. I think word was a product variance of around 10%, ‘missing’ product, not including all the cash. Big yikes. Don’t know exactly what happened, but the police were involved. They fired everybody and cleaned house. Even the new assistant, and every part-timer. I think they had to. My buddy Mike thought it was hilarious.
Well, can’t say I didn’t warn you 3 times. I saw him on social media recently, allegedly clean now. I don’t care though, screw that guy.”
7. Back Out On The Agreement? It'll End Up Costing You Much More
“My ex-husband and I had a great divorce. Even though he was unfaithful toward me after 12 years and two kids under 4, I really wanted to do things differently than my parents did during their divorce. I never said anything negative about him and tried very hard to defend him when the kids got upset with him. I extended invitations to the woman he left me for so she would not feel uncomfortable with me and we became ‘friends’.
She was basically their stepmom, so why not include her in everything?
On holidays, we all had one big dinner (him and her and me and my partner). This made everyone comfortable and the kids never had to choose one side or the other as we were all on the same page. It was such a great relationship that when I had back surgery, I recovered at his house and she cooked for me; he and I were coaches for the kids’ basketball and baseball teams, and I helped at their wedding 13 years later.
This was not easy for me, as he moved to another state to raise her children, leaving me to raise ours on my own. She quit her job when they got together and I had to return to work to support my kids. But I needed to keep the resentment and bitterness away from my kids.
All of this sets the tone for the divorce, but when he initially left, I spoke to a lawyer and got a separation agreement that was really great (for me).
He asked that I not take half of his retirement but instead, he would pay X in child support and additional Y in alimony (because he was making a lot of money and I was a stay at home mom with a country club membership. Yuck – I hated saying that but it was only to set the scene). Normally alimony ends after 5 years, but because I didn’t get half of the 401K, the only condition on ending it was it would end on my re-marriage or my death (he agreed with all of it).
The thing is when he left me to move down to where she lived, he left his cushy job and took this promising (but not delivering) position that really screwed him financially. But, he never went back to the lawyer to get the child support or alimony reduced. Instead, he borrowed from his mother.
When I discovered he was mooching off of her, I suggested to her that she stop paying for him when he finally got back on his feet.
She never would do that and continued paying for his life and her to be a stay-at-home mom). Even co-signing for a second home for him when he finally moved back to raise his kids (hers had graduated and lived in his old house; ours were in HS).
He did come to me and ask if I would accept regular child support and half of the alimony, then later when he was really earning money he would pick back up on the past due amount.
Not wanting to make waves in an otherwise great divorce, I said yes and kept track each month of what was owed in a shared spreadsheet with him so he could see how far in debt he was getting each month.
He ended up owing me $1,00/month x 10 years, but he said when the kids aged out of child support, he would continue to pay the same amount to make up for the alimony (which totaled $120,000).
When my daughter aged out, he continued to pay the same amount, putting a small dent in what he owed for three years. Then, as soon as my son aged out, I mean two weeks after he joined the Marines, he called me and told me there was no way he was going to continue paying me for the next X years and I could take him to court if I wanted but there is ‘No Freaking Way’ he would pay me another cent.
This completely blew my mind as we had such a fantastic relationship and it came out of nowhere. I was completely freaked out, but I took his advice, I contacted an attorney, I sent all his calls to voicemail, per my attorney’s advice and I took him to court.
The best thing was, prior to the hearing, my attorney put a lien on both homes he had so he could not change ownership to his mom or wife prior to the court hearing.
I still have the phone call recording when he realized this and the horrible names he called me for doing that.
Since I had kept such immaculate records from that day he changed payments, and he was aware of his debt rising each month, it was a slam dunk for my attorney. Instead of making small payments for a few years, he had 30 days to pay me $120,000 in full.
Unfortunately, the kids now have to choose which parent they visit on holidays, but that was not my fault. I was willing to continue as is and not put any strain on the family relationship.
And for those who are wondering, yes he was unfaithful toward her two times before they got married, but she had quit her job when they got together because she found a ‘sugar daddy’ and had nothing to fall back on/nowhere to go, so she stayed with him.”
6. My Company Engaged In Illegal Activities, But It Ended Up Backfiring On Them
“It was a company of around 50 employees, a small office staff, and many field technicians that worked across one US state. The owner, in his infinite wisdom, decided that most of the office staff would be salaried since they were heads of their own departments (of one). The biggest problem was you got paid hourly below 40 hours and salaried exempt over 40. Office staff worked 8-5 with a one-hour unpaid lunch and two breaks of 10 mins each.
For the first year or so, everything was fine. The office staff worked 40 hours with one of my coworkers coming in 15 minutes early to unlock and leaving 15 early while I locked up. Then came the day of one of those meetings, you know, the ones everyone except the boss leaves as a disgruntled employee. ‘Since you are all salaried and have fancy manager and director titles, more is expected of you than from the hourly employees.
You all need to clock in at 7:45 and out at 5:15.’
Everyone grumbled but obeyed for the next few pay periods, long enough for the owner to forget and move on. A month later, everyone had gone back to the old routine, everyone but me that is. I had some information from a former co-worker; it seemed a cabal of disgruntled ex-employees had decided to go to the department of labor to lodge complaints about the many illegal activities the company engaged in, most notable being that everyone was docked one hour for lunch regardless of whether they took it or not.
So I sat on that order to work 30 mins extra a day, 5 days a week, 52 weeks a year and I complied for (roughly) 2 years until out of nowhere another meeting was called. The boss was angsty and shorter than usual, trying to play it cool and fooling no one. ‘We work 8-5 and everyone must take their 1-hour lunch breaks. Work-life balance is important and everyone must only work 40 hours a week max.
This applies to myself and all of you, we are in this together and 40 hours is enough to get everything done.’
After the meeting, only one of my coworkers asked me why I looked like the cat that swallowed the canary, in spite of my efforts to resist the urge to laugh while rubbing my hands together (the boss was pretty oblivious but that would have definitely got some kind of suspicion).
I worked there for about a year longer before my tolerance for the owner’s harassment finally ran out. A few months after I left, I got a check in the mail for 3ish months’ pay and a letter protesting that it was under duress and they did nothing wrong and the government was being heavy-handed, etc. I don’t know what all he pulled but he was the kind of person that was stubborn enough to be held in contempt of court for failing to pay a disgruntled ex-employee’s commission check after being ordered by a Judge to do so.”
5. You're Mad That I Took A Long Lunch Break? Okay, Pay Me Overtime
“I was a specialized skilled tradesman about 20 years ago, I still am now but in a slightly different field. This particular field is almost always a small business and this was no exception.
I worked full time in a shop with my boss, his brother, and maybe 2 other part-time employees at the time. Since there was only a handful of us there was no formal timekeeping.
I was full-time so he would pay me 40 hrs a week, actually, he liked the old semi-monthly system so 8 hrs a day for 12-14 days a check. Which worked out fine by me.
At the time my wife’s work was only about 2 blocks away from mine so we would carpool nearly every day. Her job was a more corporate, cube-farm type job that kept more formal time records so she would have to be there by a specific time, take a specific amount of time for lunch, etc.
She also ended up putting in a small amount of overtime, usually less than an hour every day. Since she was supposed to be at work before my job’s business hours I would drop her off, let myself into the shop, and get my day started a little bit early, often helping out by getting things started for my boss or his brother. I didn’t mind, just something to do at the beginning of the day.
This routine actually resulted in me being in the shop, doing work-related activities for about 9 hrs sometimes more a day, without overtime.
Part of the routine was meeting my wife for lunch which would have me out of the shop for 30-60 min every day. Worked well, life was good.
One day my wife had a doctor’s appointment. It was scheduled mid-day and rather than just taking her car to work that day or having me leave the car with her for the day she asked me to go with her.
The doctor’s office is about 15 min from work, it wasn’t for anything serious and shouldn’t take too long so we should be there and back in about an hour.
It turned out the office was running a bit behind and we had to wait a good amount of time for her to see her doctor. It took me just over an hour and a half to get back to the shop.
I didn’t say anything to my boss when I left since I wasn’t planning on taking any longer than usual and it wasn’t any of his business. Besides we’re both professional adults and we can act as such. I figured he’d ask why I took so long, I’d tell him what happened and no harm no foul. Instead, he just looked at his watch and then the clock on the wall when I walked in and said nothing.
Ok, whatever, I’m usually longer than 8 hrs everyday I guess he realizes that, right? Wrong.
By the start of the next pay period, about a week and a half, he had installed a time clock. It’s obvious what happens next, he went from paying me 8 hrs a day to up to 9 or more a day just because he was annoyed I took a long lunch one day.
This is a typical, trip over dollars to save dimes, mentality of his.
Wait! It gets better. Remember how I said he liked the good old-fashioned semi-monthly payday system? Well, actually calculating pay that way confused him so he would calculate payroll as if he was paying biweekly. So this genius of geniuses was paying me (edit: 1-3) days overtime every pay period for only being there just over 8 hours a day 5 days a week.
I tried pointing that out to him but he wouldn’t listen so I just cashed my checks and was happy.
Eventually, I started to get sick of his business practices and attitude and started working shorter and shorter hours, and since he was paying me extra anyway it gave me time to work on the side or work second jobs. He ended up laying off myself and another full-time employee eventually since his backward business sense wasn’t managing to make any money for some reason. I was so relieved.
I struggled for a little while but ended up changing my career focus slightly and am doing just fine.”
4. You Want Me To Upload A Photo? That's Fine With Me
“My family is quite far from each other so everyone is on a group chat to be able to reach people easier. We are maybe 10 people on this group chat.
At the start of the group chat, we all talked about my grandmother and my brother suggested an online service to send photos every month of our daily lives (as families) to her. They talked a lot about putting photos of their kids, their outings, etc…
I said, ‘Sure but I won’t do it often. Maybe never, I don’t take pictures that much’. So they went through with it and they have a blast posting their photos. I did post one or two at first but really, I don’t have kids to show off and my life is just me being salty every morning that I’m still alive and I don’t take pictures with my partner.
So I stopped.
One evening after a very crappy day and a difficult month in general, I was in a pretty bad mood. So I told people I would talk to them tomorrow when I won’t hate them because they DARED making my phone ring (Yeah I’m that much of a drama queen, I was just exhausted really). Then I see that people are talking in the group chat and I saw that they were talking about filling the album online with pictures but nobody had pictures anymore.
Then my sister asked me and my other brother to ‘move your behind and post something because you never post really’ (She did not say that exactly but you get the gist). I really like my sister, she is a good person, but I was not really inclined to post a photo and I seriously did not have any except my selfies of me doing very ugly faces.
So I told her ‘Well I don’t have any, I did say that when people wanted to do it,’ but she wasn’t having it and told me to post anything, just one photo and it to not be my ugly selfies. (I asked her if one of those was okay but no).
To be honest, I would have done something just very boring like a photo of my studio or the only photo of me and my partner but like I said, I was in a bad mood.
You see, if I have that many ugly selfies, it’s because my best friend and I just love taking the most ridiculous or hideous photo of us and send them to each other like ‘look how disgusting I can be’. And we love doing it when we’re together and taking photos of ourselves.
So I took the most horrible picture of her and me, to describe it briefly imagine two girls, on a bridge looking at the camera as if we hate each other and we’re not having a good time. Like two kids that had an argument just before the photo. I took THAT one and uploaded it. I sent a short message saying ‘It did it, talk to you later.’
My sister never brought it up again.”
3. I Made The Nursing Home Pay
“Short explanation first, I have full power of attorney for my mother-in-law. This is mostly because two of her children are deceased and the two remaining daughters are high-level managers/executives and are out of town on business A LOT. I work at home and before my MIL went to the nursing home, she lived with us and I assisted and am familiar with her financial affairs.
So making me POA made sense, yes, her daughters are set up appropriately as well.
Two years ago a medical issue caused my MIL to become bedridden and could no longer walk or take care of her own personal things. We had to get her into a home. It took five nursing homes and six moves across two years to get her into a place that is as close to perfect as we could get.
After we finally get her squared away, she’s a Medicaid patient, which means she can’t have over $2500 of personal funds and the nursing home takes all of her SS and pension income, except for $60 a month.
She had SOME funds sitting aside.
However, the Medicaid approval didn’t come until the FOURTH nursing home. Over the two years, she had some things paid by Medicare and private funds, and now she’s spent down to under the required amount of funds she can keep.
The FIRST nursing home we had her in, had probably the most draconian policies, didn’t treat her well, and was about to kick her out back then unless we privately paid or get her Medicaid approval completed. We then went on a chain of going through other nursing homes that allowed her in, but the Medicaid kicked in.
The first nursing home also claimed in their advertising they take ‘Medicaid pending’ (the phrase means you’re in the process of being approved and that hopefully they can ‘retro bill’ your stay).
But they didn’t, no available beds, and weren’t really helpful except to pester us with ‘when are you going to pay?’ or ‘When are you going to leave?’ We had several other care issues with them as well.
We were better treated by the next few nursing homes, but not perfect, and now have her in a safe place.
About eight months ago, about a year and a half since she had been at the first nursing home, we get a BILL for several hundred dollars.
I argued with the nursing home, ‘Why the heck didn’t you bill us back then, while she had available funds to pay this? She cannot pay now as she’s under a limited income.’
The amount owed isn’t much, I was just mad at them for the bad treatment and the crappy attitude they treated my MIL with during her time there, and to top it off, sent us a bill well after she had the ability to pay.
They didn’t care and said they had no control over their billing. Fine, but well over a year late?
I told them we’d pay, based on the amount she could really get out of her $60 a month that Medicaid lets her keep: $5…per month.
They weren’t happy, but I sent a $5 payment monthly to the parent company of the nursing home.
This only lasted for about a few months, but they were also slow to collect the $5 in their billing system, so actually, I paid an extra $5 once to ‘keep ahead’.
Then they started getting antsy with the small amount they were getting and started including more dire wording in their bills. Got more threatening phone calls. Whether any of the threats were real or not, the letters weren’t fun.
As I said the amount wasn’t much, so I went ahead and used my own funds, and paid off the bill, just to keep the nursing home from escalating.
But as I said, I had sent an extra single $5 just to keep ahead.
The nursing home is paid off, however, they have a negative balance, OWING US $5. The nursing home’s billing system is now issuing a monthly bill, showing the -$5, and also included an envelope for payment.
I figure this is costing the nursing home about $0.75 a month, printing a bill, using two envelopes, and mailing it to us. As far as I know, it appears their system will keep spending $0.75 a month forever.
So in a year, they will have spent $8 to send us a negative balance bill…and that will just keep building and building. Haven’t gotten any other notification that they would return it, I’m not going to waste my time contacting them, they’ll sit and eat it.”
2. Your Job Isn't To Make Decisions, That's My Job
“My sister has been in the hospitality field since she got out of high school. She started at the front desk but worked just about every job having to do with the hotel business (Housekeeping, night audit, reservations, etc.).
At the time of this story, she had been the assistant hotel manager for quite a while and had a fantastic working relationship with her General Manager (Competent GM).
She would handle all the day-to-day minutiae, guest issues, and employee problems, leaving ‘Competent GM’ to handle the bigger issues and increase the business. This well-known hotel brand was located outside the major airport, was the layover hotel for a lot of aircrews, and weary travelers, and was always at or near capacity.
Fast forward a couple of years and her ‘Competent GM’ is promoted up the chain, and a new GM (Micromanaging GM) takes over.
He decides to lay down the law that he doesn’t care how things were done under the ‘Competent GM’, he was in charge now, and his word was law. All the staff was taken aback, as they had great customer feedback, and their occupancy numbers were always spectacular, and someone who was looking to disturb that was concerning. What was worse, ‘Micromanaging GM’ had just moved to the area, had yet to find an apartment, and was staying at the hotel, ensuring that he was always lurking about, aggravating the staff in their daily tasks.
My sister did everything she could to shield her people from ‘Micromanaging GM’s’ antics, all the while handling the day-to-day of the hotel front desk. My sister was used to handling guest complaints, and would regularly do whatever it took to keep angry guests happy, be it giving ‘comps’, moving rooms, or whatever it took to keep people content. Once, after upgrading an irritated guest to a better room, ‘Micromanaging GM’ pulled her aside to chew her out for doing that without permission.
My sister said that she had been instructed by ‘Competent GM’ to do whatever it took to keep the hotel running smoothly. He said, ‘Your job isn’t to make decisions, My job is to make decisions. You don’t do anything in the future without permission.’
My sister, being my sister engaged in Nuclear Malicious Compliance.
‘Yes sir? You have a complaint about your room. Let me transfer your call to ‘Micromanaging GM’.’
‘You need more towels.
Please hold while I transfer you to ‘Micromanaging GM’.’
‘We overbooked, and we need to find you another hotel room. Let me connect you to ‘Micromanaging GM’.’
After watching her do this for a few days, the rest of the staff started doing this across all shifts. The man would be woken up at 2 am to connect to an angry guest so he was getting almost no sleep with fielding so many calls.
He lasted about six weeks before he resigned. The hotel’s previous GM had to be temporarily transferred back to hold things together until a new GM could be found. My sister was told by ‘Competent GM’, that ‘Micromanaging GM’ had a nervous breakdown, and ‘Competent GM’ was trying to figure out how it happened in a hotel that was running like a Swiss watch when she left.
When ‘New GM’ was finally sent to take over, one of the things ‘Competent GM’ said to her was, ‘Your success or failure here is going to hinge on how well you get along with ‘OP’s sister.'”
1. She Told Me To Leave, So I Did Just That
“This happened during my senior prom years ago. I’m a male. Originally I didn’t even want to go to prom (and I would’ve been fine if I hadn’t gone), but a girl asked me out. I said yes, but between her asking me out and us actually going, there was dumb high school drama. Basically, I blabbed about a ‘secret’ that turned out to be a flat-out lie on her part.
Come the day of, she was already annoyed at me.
When she shows up, much to my surprise, she brought her friend with her, who we will call Amelia. Amelia and I had never gotten along from day one. I don’t know why she thought she could bring a third party without asking me.
We go out to dinner, and things are going okay-ish. Amelia then gets a text from some guy saying he was in the neighborhood and wanted to chat.
The girl I’m with says something’s up with her hair, and we need to buy a hair product. We go into a pharmacy while Amelia waits for the guy. When we come out, we see this guy and he’s literally homeless. A homeless guy chatting up a girl in a prom dress is the most bizarre thing I’ve ever seen. We get back to the car, and she fills us in: the guy was in the area because his sister’s partner was being unfaithful toward her, and he was gonna beat him up.
One of the reasons I didn’t like Amelia was the people she hung out with.
The girl I’m with then tells me to try some watermelon juice. I drank it… and it had booze in it. She knew full well I don’t drink or smoke, so she had to trick me into drinking booze. Obviously, I take one sip and then put it down (she wasn’t the last girl to spike my drink, so I don’t drink anything at parties anymore).
I don’t care what other people do with their lives, I just don’t want that crap inside of my body, and for some reason, people take issue with that.
She then drives us to a random neighborhood, where a former classmate shows up to sell her stuff to smoke, another thing she failed to mention. In fact, she had explicitly stated she wouldn’t smoke that day. By this point, I’m just irritated, and I’m not even looking forward to prom anymore, but on we go.
We pick up yet another friend that she didn’t tell me about, but this one was actually a decent human being, so I didn’t have a problem with her. To be honest, the few minutes she was in the car with us were the only ones I didn’t loathe.
Prom was being hosted at a Marriot hotel. What none of us knew was that it had valet parking.
The girl I’m with and Amelia were planning to smoke in the parking garage and then walk up, but this put a wrench in their plans. She couldn’t hand the car with substances in it over to the valet, and she couldn’t walk in with it in her hand. They decide they’re going to park two blocks away and then walk back. The girl I’m with turns to talk to me.
Her: ‘Is it ok if we smoke in front of you?’
Her: ‘Then leave.’
So I did. I left the car and walked back to the hotel by myself. Once I got in, I ran into a guy friend, and he led me to a table where our friend group was sitting. I realized that I hadn’t talked to any of these guys in months. My relationship with this girl had taken over my life, and we weren’t even a couple, we were friends.
Somehow without realizing it I had given up about twelve good friends for this one girl. When I got to the table, they all welcomed me like nothing was wrong.
Most of my friends were single at the time, so we just danced with each other. I barely danced with any girls, but I was ok with that. I just had fun with my friends. I didn’t talk to the girl the whole night, and I haven’t talked to her since. I don’t regret it one bit. She and I ended up going to the same community college, so I kept seeing her for a while. We never spoke though. I have no idea where she is now, and I’m happy with that.
A few years ago I told my sister this story, and she told me I was a loser for doing that. Meh.”